NASTD Names Karen Robinson 2020 Corporate Affiliate Committee chair: Texas IT Veteran Known for Building Bridges Between Public & Private Sectors

Karen W. Robinson

Karen W. Robinson

CEO & Founder

With over 30 years of government and private sector experience to her name, Karen Robinson’s expertise in cultivating connections between ideas, information technology solutions, and leaders in various fields is unparalleled.

Karen notably served as the Director of Administration & Technology for the Office of the Texas Governor, and during this time, she was integral in helping organize the Border Governors’ Conferences, worked closely with several state agencies, and served as the Information Resource Manager, all while overseeing the technology within Governor Perry’s office.

Karen also served as a Technical Advisor to former Texas Governor George W. Bush, as well as to the Lt. Governor’s Office, and the Texas State Senate. Karen was responsible for coordinating the state’s technology needs during crisis relief efforts and was instrumental in launching the state’s official business web portal, initiated cyber security policies, and the multi-million-dollar data center consolidation project.

Following her chapter as Director of Administration & Technology under Governor Perry, she went on to serve as the Chief Information Officer for the State of Texas and the Executive Director for the Texas Department of Information Resources (DIR).  In this position, she had statewide authority over information and communications technology planning, procurement, and service delivery. As executive director, Karen led an agency that manages information technology (IT) for more than 4,400 publicly-funded entities and operates the state’s IT Security, Communications Technology Services, Cooperative Contracts, Data Center Services, and award-winning, the Official Website for the State of Texas.

It was through her profound knowledge of the field, career achievements, and countless connections that she decided to start KWR Strategies in 2015. Since its creation, Karen’s work through KWR has formed successful collaborative relationships across both public and private sectors, and KWR has been responsible for connecting innovative technology solutions with a fresh strategy for building cross-sector teams.  

In her career, Karen has received the Texas CIO of the Year award, Texas Public Sector Executive of the Year, national recognition by State Scoop Top 50 as a Golden Government State Executive of the Year, and a Lifetime Member Award by the National Association of State Technology Directors.

Karen’s expertise and forward-thinking has called her to have previously served as a member of the Dell President’s Advisory Board, the Executive Advisory board for Acquia, as a Senior Advisory Consultant for the Texas Technology Consortium, as a Corporate Affiliate Chair for the National Association of State Technology Directors, on the Board of Directors for Digital Town, and as a board member in the CIO Council for Ridge-Lane.

She is currently on the SLED Consortium Advisory Board for NightDragon, an Advisory Board Member for T-Mobile for Government, and is an active member on multiple committees within TASSCC and the Infrastructure Architecture Committee for NASCIO.